NEW YORK (MainStreet) — Billing disputes top the list of consumer complaints related to credit cards, according to a new report released Wednesday by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.
The CFPB has been fielding credit card complaints since its July 21 launch date. The new report outlines its first three months of findings.
Of the 5,074 complaints the CFPB has received, billing disputes accounted for the largest percentage of complaints (13.4%). Annual percentage rates or interest rates garnered the second highest percentage (11%), followed by complaints regarding identity theft, fraud or embezzlement (10.8%).
The CFPB also found that consumers are often confused about the terms and conditions of their credit card contracts and associated products like debt protection services.
But consumer dissatisfaction doesn’t fall on deaf ears, as the report shows that credit card issuers are very willing to resolve complaints.
In fact, companies reported resolving more than 3,100 of the complaints, with consumers disputing the adequacy of the responses in only 400 cases, or less than 13% of the time.
The insight gained from the CFPB’s Consumer Response complaint process concerning credit cards is meant to help improve the system as it expands to new categories of financial products. The CFPB says it will begin taking complaints and inquiries related to home mortgages on or about Thursday.
“We will continue to work with consumers, credit card companies, government agencies, and others to improve consumer education and ensure CFPB’s regulation, supervision, and enforcement efforts are effective,” Raj Date, special adviser to the secretary of the Treasury at the CFPB, said in a written statement.
The CFPB expects to be ready to handle complaints for all financial products and services by the end of 2012.
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